Bipolar and Related Disorders

Bipolar and Related Disorders


  • Mood- is defined as a pervasive and sustained emotion that may have a major influence on a person’s perception of the world. Examples of mood: Depression, joy, elation, anger, anxiety.
  • Affect- is described as the emotional reaction associated with an experience.
  • Mania is an alteration in mood that is expressed by feelings of elation, inflated self-esteem, grandiosity, hyperactivity, agitation, and accelerated thinking and speaking.
  • Mania can occur as a biological (organic) or psychological disorder, or as a response to substance use or a general medical condition.

Historical perspective

  • Documentation of the symptoms associated with bipolar disorder dates back to the 2nd century in Greece.
  • In early writings, mania was categorized with all forms of “severe madness.”
  • The modern concept of manic depressive illness began to emerge in the 19th century with terms such as “dual-form insanity” and “circular insanity.”
  • The term manic-depressive was first coined in 1913, and the American Psychiatric Association adopted the term bipolar disorder in 1980


  • Bipolar disorder affects approximately 4.4% of American adults.
  • Gender incidence is roughly equal.
  • Average age at onset is 25 years.
  • Occurs more often in the higher socioeconomic classes.
  • Sixth-leading cause of disability in the middle-age group.
  • Bipolar disorder is characterized by mood swings from profound depression to extreme euphoria (mania), with intervening periods of normalcy.
  • Delusions or hallucination may or may not be part of clinical picture
  • Onset of symptoms may reflect seasonal pattern.
  • A somewhat milder form of mania is called hypomania


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